Throwback Thursday: ‘Iron Man’ starts up a super-franchise

Marvel does make good movies…

Hero Complex - movies, comics, pop culture - Los Angeles Times

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With “The Avengers: Age of Ultron” hitting U.S. theaters tonight, this week’s edition of Throwback Thursday revisits “Iron Man,” the film that kicked off the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Released seven years ago this weekend, on May 2, 2008, “Iron Man” followed the success of Sony’s “Spider-Man” and Fox’s “X-Men.”

“Iron Man” opened to positive reviews, and ticket sales skyrocketed. The film earned $102 million during opening weekend and eventually grossed $585 million at the international box office. Comic book fans and critics praised Robert Downey Jr.’s cocky performance as billionaire playboy philanthropist Tony Stark, validating what had been seen as a questionable casting decision.

Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man in "Iron Man." (Zade Rosenthal / Marvel) Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man in “Iron Man.” (Zade Rosenthal / Marvel)

“There were people in our company who directly said, ‘No. You can’t [cast Downey]. Next,” Marvel Studios President and producer Kevin Feige told The Times shortly before the film’s release.

But Feige…

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